New Crash pad >>> Work

Standard

Before settling on a specific location in this vast area, I started digging around for a short-term option … and found AirBNB.com – GREAT site, cool graphics too!  Found a little place maybe 200 yards from one of the NJ commuter trains the very long-winded Hudson-Bergen Light Rail which winds through eastern New Jersey from Bayonne to Union City.HBLR
Great setup, cars are efficient, timetables are fairly well adhered to & no weather-related problems (usually).  I also had the added benefit of travelling between 2 common stops on the 2 different Routes, so it didn’t matter which train I hopped.

HOWEVER … and you knew that was coming! … each ‘train’ operates only 2 cars.  This is acceptable for MOST times of day, but during Rush Hour they are crammed!  And the only protection from the elements on the platforms are a short cover & several glass walls (approx 15′ x 12′) … with 24″ gaps at the bottom!  What friggin use is that???  Anyway, during the late Summer & Fall – and while I was in my temp. location – it suited my needs perfectly.

NY/NJ here we come

Standard

At an unbalanced point in the universe in August, yours truly decided that being closer to the 2 (not-so-little-anymore) Young Wookettes outweighed being solo … in Bermuda … making $$$ … did I mention solo?
Step 1:  Find a job.  Lucky for me, something appeared on the Internal board for the company; not the same function but close enough.
Step 1a:  Commute from up north (where Fam is) or stay local;  Local is the call for now.
Step 2:  Find a crash pad;  Temp one found (on AirBNB.com – great site)
Step 3:  Figure out both local travel + travel northwards;  Took some time, but it gelled eventually!!!

Transition Time: The Wookie has left the building

Standard

* * * Transition Time:  The Wookie has left the building * * *
Quick note of transition … having left the Sunny Isle 6 months ago, I am no longer the definitive expert on Bermuda Commuting.  I AM however, the newest member of the New York/New Jersey Mass Transit Riders Union.  This is a most powerful entity here in the Tri-State area, with many enviable powers like completely ignoring dead bodies on trains, total oblivion using noise-cancelling listening devices & preventing train door closures.

This is the beginning of a NEW Journey for your hairy scribe – you will not be disappointed!!

Harbour Road & Rush Hour

Standard

Saying “Harbour Road” and “Rush Hour” in the same sentence tends to bring a variety of reactions from Bermuda Motorists.  Most roll their eyes or shake their head, and for good reason.  It is – bar none – the WORST PART of any commute in Bermuda.  How do I know this, you ask?  He of Bailey’s Bay ilk for approaching 20 years?  Let’s just say the living arrangements for the Family Wookie have been … erm … altered recently.  I am now West of Town, which was NOT my 1st choice, that’s for sure.

Regardless, there is NO WAY IN HELL commuting down Harbour Road in either Rush Hour is going to happen to me!  If I ain’t out of the rack by 6:00-6:30 and on the road, then I will literally wait until 9:30-10:00 to test the waters.  It is absolute mayhem & carnage!  Bikes ripping around into the other lane, stopping oncoming traffic dead; 4-Wheelers up your ass OR passing you closely enough to nudge you with the Side Mirror; then East Broadway appears … you would think there was a NASCAR event being staged!!!  People changing lanes 3X, 4X times in about 100 feet, bikes at full-tilt diving in & out of gaps (forcing ALL the traffic to quickly slow down).

I am truly amazed to see all that chaos.  I must be getting old & crotchety or something, cause it is shocking to behold!

New Crosswalk Etiquette?

Standard

You know me, I have had issues with 4-Wheelers, Bikes, Trucks, Buses … well, ALL vehicles really! … when it comes to Crosswalks.  For may years, I have maintained that EVERY SINGLE crosswalk should be Raised and essentially un-navigable (is that a word?) unless the vehicle is creeping along.  Now this latest development:  pedestrians are now REQUIRED TO BE GIVEN  PERMISSION to cross the road.  Yes, it’s true!

In the past year, every single time I have stood waiting to cross – since it’s too frickin dangerous to simply step out onto a Crosswalk these days – I have to wait for “The Signal” from a motorist, giving me their permission to cross…which can range from a simple Index Finger Flick (while gripping the steering) to a Head Flick (from bikes, usually) to a Hand Sweep (a seemingly gracious gesture).  Worst offenders?  Take your pick – I have dodged every single mode of transport on this Rock while crossing a Crosswalk.

If I’m not mistaken (unlikely!), Pedestrians are supposed to have the Right of Way while on a Crosswalk.  The new JayWalking craze however does not require a Right of Way discussion.  If you’re not on the Crosswalk, then motorists have every right to Beep you.  Just sayin’ …

“What does a PC license plate mean?”

Standard

I seriously had that question posed to me by someone the other day; “Does it mean you’re a Cop!?!?” There are idiots out there who actually don’t know.
That said, the indignation the CoH parking pass-holders show when I pull into an ACTUAL Handicapped Parking spot is palpable. Even as I’m wheeling the Little Wookette out of the back in her Wheelchair, they ask, “Ya gonna be long? Um gotty to go store, right.”
How is it that I have to vie for a Wheelchair-accessible parking spot with stupid, fat, unhealthy morons who think because they paid CoH money it gives them the right to park all day AFTER DRIVING THEIR OWN CAR TO TOWN.
On top of that, the next Traffic Warden who tells me I have to Pay & Display is going to limp away from me pregnant for all the F’s I’m going to put into them.

New Traffic Laws re: Pedestrian Crossings

Standard

Gazette Article today
Glad someone had the stones to speak up about Derek’s little sabre rattle over the toddler who was killed … and the “sweeping” legislation Derek & his cronies shuffled in last session.
King has it right (sort of) that the new Offenses will only add to our prison population.  It does NOT address the source of the danger nor any recipe to correct the behaviour that causes the danger in the first place.

  • Move ALL crossings BEHIND the layby/bus’ rear; parallel traffic will be better able to see what’s happening
  • On Main roads, add the flashers AND EDUCATE TO PUBLIC TO USE THEM (not dash across like 3-4 people I saw this past weekend)
  • Educate bus passengers NOT to attempt to cross until AFTER the bus has moved on

Wookie

Cell Phone bonanza yesterday!

Standard

Even though it’s Half Term for almost all schools, traffic (beginning Monday) has been logically fairly light.  On the way in on Monday, travel time was down by at least 5 minutes;  No Grannies/O-fers™ delivering the Little Precious;  Minimal buses … nice way  to start the week!

On the way home, mostly the same.  However – since I left the orifice a bit late – I expected even fewer impediments.  Oddly enough, I was wrong.  No matter, the Middle Lane™ was going to provide my respite from the unusual line of traffic I pulled behind about @ Dev. Rec.

As I passed the line (consisting of 5 cars, 2 Bikes & a Taxi) EVERY SINGLE DRIVER WAS ON THE PHONE … with the exception of the pillion passenger on Bike #2, who was relaying instructions from the Phone to the Rider!!!  Taximan was all dickty with his bluetooth headset, but still laughing & jabbering away.

Amazing!

You can tell a lot from a license plate (Part I)

Standard

Thought about this on the way in yesterday.  You CAN tell a lot about the operator of a 4-Wheeler by their license plate.  This is Part I of a detailed critique of the vehicular particulars based on a number … cool, eh?!?!

Case #1:  Plate # starting with an “0”
One of what I like to call the O-Fers…as in O-9876.  These are plates are throwbacks to the old 4-digit plate of the 70’s.  Many of the drivers of these are going to be grandparents taking The Little Precious to/from school (and more often than not, only do the Speed Limit…grrrr!).  The cars are usually in good shape, minimal dents & dings and generally well looked after.

Alternately, it’s the daughter of said Grandparent who took ownership of the car.  It becomes apparent (pun intended!) following this variation of 4-Wheeler that it may be an exception to the above rule.  Car is dented, scraped, windows dirty & opaque, stupid little air-freshener + plastic beads + mini Jamaican/Trini/other flag dangling from the mirror.  Child bobbing around, jumping from front to back -OR- permanently jammed between the front seats…no carseat/booster seat, no seatbelt, no safety observations at all.  Driver yakking on their Blackberry, usually a cigarette clutched in one hand, music going.

Too bad Granny & Grandpa had to give up the car … I’d rather follow them @ 35kph than Ace-Girl anytime!